Monday, August 22, 2011

Answering a child’s question

Mommy what does this say?” I take a moment to look at the box with the littlest pet shop animals inside my daughter is holding. I have the baby trying to get out of the seat in the shopping cart and her sister underfoot telling me about the Barbie she wants. Its in these moments I just want to tell her and move on. I know inside this is an important moment to help her with her reading. I pick the baby up, ask Amelia to see if she can count how many Barbie boxes there are and sit down with the baby and Emma. Yes right there in the aisle of the store. I ask her to sound it out while putting my finger up to the letters. After about 30 seconds she read the words on the back she was having trouble with.
I think as a parent it is so important we find every opportunity we can to teach our children. A lot of people feel that school is where they learn and home is a break from that. I don’t think you have to pull out a bunch of workbooks and dictionaries and have them sit at the table all day. However, I do think there are so many moments where we can teach them above and beyond what they are learning in the classroom. I find simple ways to do this throughout the day.
If I am cooking dinner I have them help and we discuss measurements when we are following a recipe. We start out with needing a cup then discuss breaking that down to half a cup or a third. By the time we are done they know how many teaspoons are in a tablespoon and they also walk away with a better understanding of fractions. If we are outside playing and they ask about the plants we talk about photosynthesis. They even learned about condensation when asking why the underside of the pool was wet when it didn’t rain.
.There are so many examples I could give, but these were just a few. The best part is these weren’t long drawn out conversations. It only takes a few moments of every ones time. When we stop and take a moment to help educate our children we are giving them a gift. Not something they even notice, but we are increasing their knowledge and helping them with important life skills. One more important thing here I feel noteworthy, we are also letting them know we love them. We are taking time to talk with them. I see so many parents push their child aside because they are to busy. Yes, sometimes we are, but every time hurts the child and the parent in the long run. We only get them little for a while. Before we know it they will be gone. I think we will wish we took even more time with them.

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